Five Things You Didn’t Know About the Viola

So, your child has decided that they want to join the school band. Have you considered the viola as an instrument choice? Most people know the viola as a string instrument that fills the gap between the violin and the cello. But here are a few other facts you might be interested to learn.

Five Things You Didn’t Know About the Viola

There are far fewer violists than violinists

In fact, the viola is often known as the Cinderella of the orchestra because it’s kind of forgotten about and neglected. Does that mean that you should follow the crowd and recommend another instrument? No! It actually means that if your child becomes proficient and wants to take up viola playing as a career or a lucrative hobby, they’ll face far less competition and stand a better chance of gaining the choice parts.

Pitch perfect

Pitched lower than a violin but higher than the cello, the viola is frequently viewed as a harmonising instrument. The viola is strung with C, G, D, and A, this gives the instrument more of an earthy, mellow tone than the violin. But being a whole octave higher than the cello, it avoids that inherently mournful vibe.

Weighty workout

Violas are only slightly bigger than violins, but that does make a difference to their weight. Playing the viola can make you stronger simply because it is that little bit heavier. The weight combined with the intricate fingering can improve the strength in your biceps, triceps, wrists, and hands. If your child is as interested in fitness as they are in music, the viola can be a good choice!

Clef control

Viola players have to read music with alto clef instead of treble clef. Very few other musicians need to do this. The alto trombone is one of the other exceptions. If you’re starting out as a complete beginner, this isn’t really a concern. You’ll just learn what you need to learn. But anyone looking to switch to a viola from the violin – or almost any other instrument – will have to relearn everything they know. The upside is that every other musician will be really impressed by this!

You can pick your name

No one seems able to agree upon what to call someone who plays the viola. Some opt for viola player. Others tossup between violist and violaist. It all comes down to personal choice. So, which is your favourite?

Violas are a great choice for any child looking for an interesting instrument to learn. Full of potential and yet, a little bit different. But to be on the safe side, it’s a good idea to rent an instrument before making the financial commitment of a purchase. That way, you get to see if the viola is right for your child, And with an inbuilt insurance policy and the option of rent-to-buy available, you’ve got all bases covered!

If you’d like to find out more about viola rental, contact the Rent From Home team today.